I always talked a big game, but when it came to actually speaking my truth, my lips were paralyzed. Berating myself for not opening my mouth and uttering the words that were hanging off my tongue was a constant battle. Something happened to me in the last couple of years where I am more bold with my truth.
Now, that is not to say when I do speak up, it is dripping with sugar. I am still working out the kinks, but I will confirm that I am getting better with the process. Yesterday, while taking my car to the local dealership for service, I was struck by the abandonment of common courtesy. If you read my blog yesterday, I was all over that concept. I greeted one of the ladies at the desk with a “good morning” and was slapped with an abrupt “someone will be with you in a moment”. It was 8 am on a Saturday morning. I get that she might not be a morning person or possibly her life circumstances are harsh, but that really doesn’t excuse being rude. Something inside of me bubbled. I knew the words were brewing and that is when my truth took over my body. “Let’s start over. I am going to say “good morning and ask how you are” then you are going to respond to me,”. My tone was kind. It really was because the one thing I am working on is saying what I mean without be a total bitch. Which is hard. She simply stared at me for a few seconds. I said again, “Good morning! How are you?” and she responded back. It was an awkward dialogue, but it happened.
While I waited there were a few reluctant individuals choosing to wait for their cars. A variety of cell conversations were going on simultaneously. I remember a time long, long ago where people just sat in silence while waiting. Gee, I miss those days. I decided not to speak my truth in that setting because they all looked scary and I didn’t want to get my ass kicked, so I simply posted my annoyance on social media and put my ear buds in to deflect from the scattered dialogue. Sometimes you have to pick your battles.
After an hour and a half, I noticed my car being pulled into the exit lane. I knew that any moment, my name would be called to the cashier. Any moment. Seriously, any moment. Okay, the moments passed and I waited an additional ten minutes. I exhaled and walked over to the cashier desk. I said, “I am assuming since my car has been sitting there for ten minutes that it is complete.” She looked stunned as if she had been a guest on “The Maury Povich”show and found out none of the guys where her baby daddy. Then she smiled, first smile I had seen in that place. She apologized and walked over to the woman who I had spoken my truth to, who by the way, was probably saying “shit” in her head when she saw it was me. Apparently, someone dropped the ball and forgot to share the news that I had been released from “service waiting room hell”. Then the miracle happened, the cranky lady said, “I am so sorry you had to wait. You can take this paperwork to the cashier and you will be set to go. Have a great day!”. She even smiled. Okay, so maybe the smile was because she knew I was leaving, but I had hoped that maybe our conversation, awkward as it was, made a difference.
We all deserve common courtesy, respect, and validation. It really isn’t a hard concept. Maybe what I said to that women made an impression. Maybe she greeted others with more respect, but the reality is it doesn’t matter. What matters is that I didn’t settle for something less than I deserve….what we all deserve. I can speak my truth by remembering three important criteria……is it kind? is it true? is it necessary?……..and from there saying what I mean without saying it mean.